Hello. I recently came off testosterone therapy. I never needed it, just thought I did and kept taking it for years while using HCG to keep my natural flowing. I have been in touch with some chinese practitioners regarding this and using chinese herbs right now. Its been 10 weeks off and still feel miserable. They mention if it gets so bad, I should go back on but continue using the herbs to build up my kidney energy and then taper off the hormones? I can’t really find an answer to this because taking hormones shuts down or reduces the amount of testosterone the body produces so how can the herbs work at the same time? It doesn’t make sense to me. Looking to see if it is possible to actually increase kidney energy while using hormones. Not looking for medical advise. Thanks.
You can technically do it both ways, it would depend greatly on the patient and their underlying diagnosis in Chinese Medicine terms (see “treating the cause and not the symptoms”) and their particular health history.
Generally speaking you shouldn’t need the western hormones, but in some cases it can be quicker to get the result that you want by combining approaches temporarily. My clinical preference is to do it with herbal medicine and acupuncture alone in most cases, but I would say in about 10% a combination of western hormones and Chinese herbal medicine is quicker. Generally you would only be on the herbal formulas for about 2-6 months.
Well I’m not sure it could be done with herbs and acupuncture alone. In my case at least becuase it has been 10 weeks on herbs and acupuncture and feel the same. I stopped cold turkey and then started the herbs later that week. The problem with hormones (aside from other western drugs) is that it affects the HPTA. This means that when the body sees an exogenous source of testosterone, it shuts down or reduces dramatically the production of its own testosterone. The pituitary senses this and stops sending the signals to the testicles to produce testosterone (and other hormones) since it is getting this from an external source.
So I don’t know how herbs can increase that when the hormones decrease it at the same time. I know that the hormones do not shut down production 100% or one would die. There is a reduction. But I’m just not sure taking both the hormones and herbs could increase the kidney energy to a point where the hormones could then be tapered off. As mentioned, there is this negative feedback loop happening whenever exogenous testosterone is administered. Seems like trying to go uphill and downhill at the same time. I would like to know more input on that specific mechanism if that is possible or maybe I do not understand it completely. 2 practitioners told me to take the herbs with the hormones and then taper off.
The diagnosis seems to be (from multiple practitioners): kidney deficiency, mostly yang but some yin as well or as some have said it: kidney jing deficiency.
What herbs and at what dose are you taking currently. Also, keep in mind that it can take months to remedy hormonal issues, so I would not expect a quick change within a few weeks. By week 10 there should be some noticeable change - what does your current practitioner think? Do they see improvement in your signs, tongue, etc.?
You do have to be on exactly the right formula and that formula will likely change over time - so it’s not a cookie cutter approach. Yes, the wrong formula and/or wrong approach with acupuncture you will likely get nowhere, possibly even worse.
Yes this is an issue I am having. I am on a formula called RenoNature and Upower. The practitioner mentioned I have kidney yin and yang deficiency. This is an online doctor that refuses to work with me because I was having emotional issues during this phase and he doesn’t seem to care but the herbs make me feel better:
Then I visited my local acupuncturist. He is Korean and mentioned I should take thw QIANG JING BU SHEN WAN aka Kidney Essence Power (but agreed I could combine it with the Upower for more yang energy).
Are these the right formulas? Tongue diagnosis Im not sure since I have stomach issues so a lot of my tongue is gray in the spleen/stomach areas. Dont know how to tell kidney energy from the tongue. The local guy says it takes a long time but agreed if symptoms got so bad I should go back on hormones and just take the kidney essence power with it.
I’m just not sure what is right anymore. this is why i am here. I need real guidance from someone who understands east and west. I’ve never in my life felt this bad before even last year. I am concerned the herbs could be making me worse like you said although I do feel they give me energy and increase the size of my testicles but again I am not sure. My energy is so low, I have trouble carrying a conversation it is that bad. My total testosterone was tested 2 weeks ago at 153ng (range of 241-827).
So within one post you say:
and, then, just another post down you say:
So first, I would drop all of the theoretical terms (“kidney energy”, etc.) and the talking about testosterone levels (because they fluctuate wildly day to day) and start with discussing what your exact symptoms are. And, then, if your second statement was true, what in very exact terms does “make me feel better” mean?
From what you are describing you will do very poorly on any kind of lower level kidney treatment without first remedying your stomach/spleen issues - not least of which because assimilation of the herbs themselves will likely be poor.
You cannot have digestive signs like that and do well on kidney tonics, generally speaking. Is there anyone else locally that you can work with that does both acupuncture and herbal medicine.
Generally speaking, online consultations are poor in comparison to the amount of information received from working with someone locally. We offer them through this site, but we prefer people find someone locally to work with. Our forums are really intended more for general questions and then questions of a more theoretical/clinical nature from a practitioner (i.e. I see this, this, and this and was thinking it could be either x or y - which one do you think). The amount of personal information we need to truly try to help the average person online is completely inappropriate for a public forum.
Yes I understand. What I mean is without the herbs, I really feel like Im going to collapse. So they make me feel better. But overall as the 10 weeks went by on the herbs, I feel the same, as in as soon as I try stopping the herbs, that super weak feeling comes back so I dont know if I am improving. I went to a few different ones locally and I just can’t seem to get a straight answer. Each says something else. One lady just said “everything is out of whack” and just wants to have me come in for acupuncture, never mentioning kidney energy or anything. My stomach issues have been there a long time because of poor diet as a kid and lots of worries. I’m not sure what to do next but am desperate enough to fly somewhere if I have to, I simply see no hope but to possibly go back on and keep an even stricter diet which seems to limit my foods to only a handful.
There are some things you can do with your diet to try to help. Don’t eat more than 20g of protein at once. Don’t mix meats with carbs like bread, pasta, potatoes, etc. Veggies go with everything, keep meats and other proteins separate from carbs. Don’t drink a lot with your meal, especially not cold liquids. Try to eat mostly cooked foods, very little raw foods. If you’re able to follow these guidelines you might notice improvement within a month or two.
I do these except the mixing of carbs and proteins. the concern i have is if i separate everything, then i would be eating many times per day and this would put more stress on my digestive system but maybe not, i dont know. i even separate nuts from proteins as well. i did drop oatmeal from my diet, it was just terrible but would fill me up and i missed that. i replaced with rice (eaten with 3 whole eggs and veggies) and didnt notice much negative effects on my stomach.
i spoke to another practitioner that i saw 4 years ago and he once did electro-acupuncture on my stomach and it was wiggling and wobbling all over the place. i had originally went there because of my dull prostate pain when sitting which was all related to too much masterbation and he didnt go over that as much as he said “your stomach has NO energy”. i stopped going since he was too far but looking to go again. he said that its true what you say, the stomach needs to be fixed first and i should not be using any kidney formulas so i told him i will have to go back on the hormones and he said never stop cold turkey you will feel miserable. he prescribes actual formulas that you go pick up loose and make yourself in a clay pot or pills he makes for ease. but he does change the formula often, i remembered this. my prostate issue went away when i corrected that myself.
i did ask him how can kidney tonics help one get off hormone therapy if one reduces production and one increase it. he is a professor actually. and mentioned thats a good question. but then he mentioned the herbs protect against cell damage from the hormones so as you take them, they are able to build up the testicles and after 2-3 months begin to taper off the hormones and the testicles should be at a much higher production, allowing one to come off as if i had done a shorter cycle or less amount (not 6.5 years of constant use).
So looks like i will be going back on the hormones but i am willing to micro-dose daily shots so my body hopefully doesnt sense this as exogenous and then reduces output internally but i dont know. i can always increase my dose. but he definitely did say that i should fix my stomach issues first.
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